By Jackson Armstrong
On Friday 24th and Saturday 25th February 2017 our project hosted its first symposium, on the subject of ‘Cultures of Law in Urban Northern Europe’. This was funded by the Research Institute of Irish and Scottish Studies (RIISS) and was held in the Craig Suite at the Sir Duncan C. Rice Library, University of Aberdeen.
After a welcome from Michael P. Brown on behalf of RIISS, and an introduction offered by Jackson Armstrong, the sessions, chaired by Anna Havinga, Adam Wyner, Andrew Mackillop and William Hepburn included the following presentations:
Graeme Small (Durham) and William Hepburn (Aberdeen) – Typology of the written record: materiality and process in the Aberdeen Council Registers
Christian Liddy (Durham) – The publication of law
David Ditchburn (TCD) – Time: Extracts from the Aberdeen Council Registers
Edda Frankot (Aberdeen) – Legal business outside the courts: private and public houses as spaces of law
John Ford (Aberdeen) – The Voyage of the James of Veere: Maritime Law in Aberdeen in the Early Sixteenth Century
Claire Hawes (Aberdeen) – Debt, Morality and the Law in fifteenth-century Aberdeen
Justyna Wubs-Mrozewicz (Amsterdam) – Conflicts about property and inheritances in sixteenth century Danzig
Jelle Haemers (& Chanelle Delameillieure) (Leuven) – Jurisdiction and Marriage in the Fifteenth-Century ‘Registers of the Aldermen’ of Ghent and Leuven
Michael H. Brown (St Andrews) – Burghs and Regalities: Conflicts of Jurisdiction
Jörg Rogge (Mainz) – Pax Urbana – the use of law for the achievement of political goals
Andrew Simpson (Aberdeen) – Texts of the Medieval Scottish Common Law in the Aberdeen Council Registers
Jackson Armstrong (Aberdeen) – ‘Malice’ and motivation for hostility and non-lethal wounding
Joanna Kopaczyk (Edinburgh) – Language as code: language choices and functions in a multilingual legal culture
Anna Havinga (Aberdeen) – Language shift in the Aberdeen Council Registers
Adelyn Wilson (Aberdeen) – Legal education in Aberdeen in the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries
Proceedings on Friday 24th also included a visit to Old Aberdeen House (Aberdeen City and Aberdeenshire Archives) with Phil Astley, and to St Machar Cathedral.
The objective of this first gathering was to present ‘gobbet’ style extracts from primary sources, and to raise questions for development illustrated by those extracts. We look forward to reconvening in 2018 to share draft papers developed from these initial questions and discussions, in collaboration for an edited collection of essays on the subject.